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An enemy’s enemy is a friend Air Asia India will set new benchmarks for budget travel New IT products of Ramco in the pipeline… The sea- saw battle continues... The nuclear option The power-full Hindujas There was flood of milk. Reason: no milk commissioner! Mersal magnified R Sridhar steps down as CEO of Shriram Capital Delhi Chalo... No mega rail project for Tamil Nadu Making ‘my Amaravati’... GM Technology at last! Kudos to NDTV... When the President was rendered homeless… Intellectual of rare qualities Inflation: are we emulating Argentina and Brazil? Delhi is distant The rise and fall of Annamalai University Bihar elections - the Rajaji formula worked Discoms deserve better… Return to king coal for urea... Reliance’s TV – 18 ready to launch Tamil News Channel B H Kothari - a tribute Dr C Rangarajan returns to Chennai A glass full of corruption Modi storms Silicon Valley Chennai and Kolkata miss opportunity to grow as Delhi and Mumbai More tributes to GR SoA @ 80 When online building permits work…. Welcome changes that testify to Jayalalithaa’s return to health Odisha: spectacular win by Naveen Patnaik IPL - no surprise this scam Permanent secretariat for TN GIM West Bengal: mindless malignancy An inexplicable neglect Why land prices zoom in TN? Shale gas and its shallow future Sweeter prospects for sugar Silver Years of Madras Musings Solar, solar everywhere … Remembering Indira Sivasailam... TN accounts for the largest recruits by the IT sector TN – agglomerate land holdings without alienating ownership Polls and promises L&T: focus on infrastructure and more infrastructure… Shipping woes of Chennai companies Delhi returns to BJP Sweet news for TN sugar mills TELANGANA at last…BUT Rs.1600 crore paper board plant of TNPL CSR and CMI: promise of another Srinivasan Ramanujan... The Swadeshi Trump London, London Narayan Tribute – Manikam Ramaswami The rise and rise of KCP Poor quality of university VCs Eternal support for capitalisation of PS banks Gas is the way forward Editor's Says TIAM turns a full cycle ONGC at KG Basin No engine for this car Liberal imports idling indigenous capacities Recognition to role of NBFCs.... Another Indian music maestro at the UN Cutting the nose to spite the face Wise Presidents Telangana in top gear… F C Kohli - his concerns all embracing The Gulf aviation boom Russi Mody – a tribute Adapt Vajpayee dinner diplomacy Lalu’s envy, India’s pride This scant respect for Law Limit foreign borrowings to hi-tech, export potential projects... Valli, they are more marginalised For whom the MIDS bell tolls? Scientists urged to take up farmer-oriented research Fortune 500 review Fuel for thought IAS invades NDDB... Bihar – Nitish Kumar adopts the Lalu model to the lack of interest on the part of these to focus on original research. This despite the much lower costs of such research in India. The industry which thrived on the protection of a closed economy and the advantage of a vast domestic market, has failed to organise its evolution on healthy lines He saved millions from starvation... A more liberated TN… Naidu will soon build a new Hyderabad Put expensive assets created to use... Welcome thrust on trade in Modi’s foreign visits... Gay abandon in pricing Measuring roof tops in terms of KW/MW Convulsions in The Hindu Quality silica from Neyveli Whistle-Stop Tour of Raghuram Rajan Road development slows down TN-leverage strength of BHEL, NLC... Muffled voices for merit… Medical costs hit the roof... The star of Spencers is no more Lesson from Chandrababu Naidu Haul over the coal Protest masters... Tihar, Puzhal not different from Parappana Agrahara The ‘Jayanthi Tax.’ EEC at the National Media Centre Focus on quality of power - its only around 170-180V A rich pool of talent not utilised…. Editor's Notes Streamlining mandatory third party cover Things happen by accident and not by design... Preserving for the future A welcome initiative by the judiciary Tribute – M V Murugappan Make standards certification mandatory... Roaring Ro-Ro facility L&T- the specialty of special purpose vehicles Mu Sigma – is no more Computation of GDP – conundrums continue Where a state respects its litterateurs… Online not in line with brick and mortar businesses... The few handicaps... Funding the un-funded PC’s preference for professionals Tough task taking states together Strengthen the base... S V Raju – a ‘good’ true liberal A Grand Finale for SN’s MS centenary at the US… Building loyalty through the stomach Cement prices continue to rise… Of course, Gujarat is vibrant Secularism and anti-Hinduism Poor representation for Kerala and TN in Cabinet Tax agriculture S Ramanathan – a versatile musician, musicologist The brown list of Venkitaramanan Excel Generators provide the vital back-up An informal presentation - analytical, forward locking... Tribute EVM is tamper-proof Sri Lanka votes for change Boy, can you beat these? Paytm karo... No Maha Koottani in TN... When Ratan Tata visited SRM Vibrant Gujarat The Jan Dhan bonanza The why of tax incentives Demise of a media baron... Should we change the official year? More Shakti to resource mobilisation... The Ports’ Pasha expands into Tamil Nadu Towards speedy justice For whom the bell tolls? Welcome focus on core competence Banning booze... Quality education through the PPP mode A friendly business group Tribute – UCAL Selvan… Wanted: a second airport for Chennai MHC should not return to its old indisciplined ways Delhi is distant… Naidu’s return augurs well for Seemandhra CRS, a jewel among managers, is no more. The balancing act A yen for wastage… Noble nonagenarians... GNS - 100: our first subscriber Build close rapport with business leaders Land reclamation from sea appears cheaper! A proud Madrasi Multi-faceted Venkat Fall in crude prices help in oil sector reform China invests in India Like Hinduism: many paths to reach God... TGS- The king storyteller Airlines in India: cost and space Infrastructure funding – lessons learnt Insurance companies bleeding, yet no decision on increasing FDI limit! Nuclear power at the nucleus Which side are you, Montek? Adharma of opposition politics Rahman at CIC Auto components surge… WTO Meet: resolved to meet again Modi and the lady Where is Rajaji? When TN politicians can emulate Kerala's Five star activism stalls development activity Cleaning Ganga – relocate tanneries and install electric crematoria Plummeting profits of PSBs Small units prefers to remain small... IPL type auction for VCs? More heat than light Fortune for Indian Airlines When small is no larger beautiful.. All eyes on Sankara Nethralaya CII projects higher growth… Pharma – overdose of copying Kulandai was a giant CIPET hqrs to stay at Guindy – for the present? A think tank for Chennai Readers' Mail Shanti and Sadhana through Music How Air-India loses customs... Don’t seem to feel the pulse… Revving up the manufacturing sector Godspeed, Chief Minister JJ A C Muthiah – his munificent bequeaths to science More Shakthi to Das’ elbow Breaththrough in malaria control Varuna (rain) in 2015; Vaayu (air) in 2016. Chennai devastated The ‘Ayyo-yes’ is no more …and of a popular trade leader Maximising the micro pricing … Revive development banks... Shaming of Tamils by Tamil farmers at Delhi Alexa – Talking Wikipedia PPP mode for upgrading Corporation Hospitals Waning interest in public discussions… Not just in-laws (and outlaws); they’ve renowned academics at the helm! Align crops to agro climate endowments… A Grand Finale for SN’s MS centenary at the US… Kinetic Karnataka Music happens Welcome GST Robber barons everywhere Come elections, come advertisements... Marketing expert Balagopal is no more Moily’s bold thrust Diamond jubilee of Egmore Samskrt School Why this malaise in medical education? A professional at the helm of IRDA... Tatas moving out of urea production... Increasing non co-operation of state leaders When nations steal growth from one another… Contrarian cousins Parliament in paralysis... Tatas moving out of urea production... He continues the focus on social amelioration Solar thermal shines… Padma Bhushan for A Ramakrishna Engineering seats go abegging Colour-Chem’s colourful KRVS
 
Not just in-laws (and outlaws); they’ve renowned academics at the helm!

At the 150 year celebration of the Madras University the renowned educationist Dr M Anandakrishnan was asked: “when will an Indian University gain the renown of a Stanford, Harvard, MIT or Cambridge university?” The former Vice Chancellor of Anna University responded that in the present scheme of things this is unlikely for quite some time. He pointed to higher education in our country outside government is largely an edu-business: “these were promoted and owned by families of politicians, real estate barons or other sundry businessmen. Rarely one finds an educationist heading or managing a higher educational institute. He pointed to the Provost or President of MIT, Princeton or any prestigious Business School invariably a renowned academic. And contrasted it with the sons, daughters or in-laws (and outlaws) functioning as the pro-chancellors and vice chancellors of our educational institutions!

Happily some rules have changed making it mandatory to appoint only academicians of some standing as vice chancellors though the characters of most of these institutions continue as money making edu-business.

For state-owned universities in Tamil Nadu the political leadership in power decides the process of selection  and hence the person for the post. The short tenure compounds the deficiency.

One finds vast difference between the fees charged by government-owned institutions and those run by private businessmen. Huge capitation fees have been collected, mostly in black. A few of these, bestowing care on quality faculty, have earned a reputation and hence better custom. These have invested on rich infrastructure.

SRM University and allied institutions are perhaps the most visible examples of the prosperity of the education business. The promoters have expanded in several directions ranging from multi-specialty hospitals, software, television and print media.

While most other private institutions of higher education are diversions from politics to education (eg. VIT, Sathyabama), the SRM promoter seems to play the reverse role: from education to politics. How adroitly he presented Narendra Modi for the latter’s campaign for the Lok Sabha elections and also had him as the chief guest at the university convocation. Like The Hindu’s N Ram sensing the change in mood of the nation and hosting a private dinner for A B Vajpayee before the elections in 1998, putting aside his Mani Shankar Ayyar like aversion to the RSS and BJP!

 

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